The analysis of land cover dynamics provides insight into many environmental problems. However, there are few data sources which can be used to derive consistent time series, remote sensing being one of the most valuable ones. Due to their multi-temporal and spatial coverage needs, such analysis is usually based on large land cover datasets, which requires automated, objective and repeatable procedures. The USGS Landsat archives provide free access to multispectral, high-resolution remotely sensed data starting from the mid-eighties; in many cases, however, only single date images are available. This paper suggests an objective approach for generating land cover information from 30m resolution and single date Landsat archive satellite imagery. A procedure was developed integrating pixel-based and object-oriented classifiers, which consists of the following basic steps: i) pre-processing of the satellite image, including radiance and reflectance calibration, texture analysis and derivation of vegetation indices, ii) segmentation of the pre-processed image, iii) its classification integrating both radiometric and textural properties. The integrated procedure was tested for an area in Sardinia Region, Italy, and compared with a purely pixel-based one. Results demonstrated that a better overall accuracy, evaluated against the available land cover cartography, was obtained with the integrated (86%) compared to the pixel-based classification (68%) at the first CORINE Land Cover level. The proposed methodology needs to be further tested for evaluating its trasferability in time (constructing comparable land cover time series) and space (for covering larger areas).
In the last 20 years air photograph and remote sensing, both from airplane and satellite, allowed to gain, from the analysis of the superficial land unit characteristics, useful information for the location of buried archaeological structures. For this kind of investigation, hyperspectral MIVIS (Multispectral Infrared and Visible Imaging Spectrometer) data revealed to be very useful, for example, since 1994, for the purpose CNR-LARA research project, many archaeological studies have been supported by MIVIS data on several italian archaeological sites: Selinunte, Arpi (Foggia), Villa Adriana (Tivoli) and Marsala. Marsala town, the ancient Lilybaeum, lies on the western coastline of Sicily, at about 30 km south of Trapani. Founded by the Phoenicians, it intensely lived during the Punic, Roman, Arab and Norman periods, whose dominations left many important remains. This archaeological area was investigated by means of several techniques, such as excavations, topographic studies based on airborne campaigns, etc. On this site the main archaeological information were provided by the analysis of the VIS-NIR spectral bands and by Thermal Capacity image.